NewsCommunityVista SemanalLocal


Limiting lodging occupancy: SLO County to do compliance checks

Posted at 6:43 PM, May 18, 2020

Now is not the time for vacation or leisure travel to San Luis Obispo County.

That's the message of the short term lodging order now in effect.

This is typically the busiest time of year for hotels here on the Central Coast but now with this new order, they must limit occupancy to no more than 50%.

San Luis Obispo County's pristine coastline and quaint hotels are ideal for the unofficial start of Summer.

"Memorial Day weekend is almost 100% filled, all the time," said Tom Klock, Front Desk Agent of the Sea Otter Inn.

But this year is different for Sea Otter Inn on the popular Moonstone Beach Drive in Cambria.

The lack of tourism coupled with the new short term lodging order has dwindled down the occupancy numbers significantly.

"Normally though, this begins our super busy time of year," Klock explained.

He says this coming Friday, they're at 24% occupancy. Saturday bookings are 36% and Sunday is just 16%.

"I've noticed a couple cancellations just today from people that have made reservations for this week and the reservations are much lower than they were the previous week," Klock said.

According to Visit SLO CAL, last Memorial Day weekend the countywide occupancy totaled nearly 88% with a high of nearly 96% on Saturday night.

Meantime, San Luis Obispo County says it'll be enforcing the new occupancy limit through random compliance checks.

"If individual businesses are violating our order then we do have means at our hands to cite them for that," said Dr. Penny Borenstein, San Luis Obispo County Public Health Officer.

It also serves as a reminder that the statewide stay-at-home order is still in effect and non-essential travel is discouraged.

"We are asking for our lodging partners and our visitors to take heed and to not use this as the time to come to our county," Dr. Borenstein said.

The lodging order will be reviewed every 14 days. It also applies to RV Parks and campgrounds where only San Luis Obispo County residents will be allowed to stay.